The Rumors Suggest Patrick Peterson Wants to Stay in Minnesota; Does Minnesota Want Him?

The rumors suggest that Patrick Peterson – an eleven-year vet who is playing on an $8 million, one-year deal – wants to return to the Vikings.

Chris Tomasson provides the details:

Former NFL cornerback Bryant McFadden, who is Peterson’s cousin and hosts the “All Things Covered” podcast with him, said Peterson, 31, wants to re-sign after this season with Minnesota. “If he stays healthy, I think he could be in a Minnesota Vikings uniform for a few more years,’’ McFadden said. “He loves Minnesota. He’s really embraced (it). He’s done some (of his) foundation work there in the (Twin Cities) already, so he’s implemented himself in the streets of Minnesota, not just in football but off (the field).’’

Bryant McFadden will have a better understanding of Peterson’s feelings than almost anyone else. The two, quite evidently, are close. Nevertheless, I’m still putting the Patrick Peterson news in the rumors category. I’ll wait to hear from Peterson himself and/or his agent before treating this as being 100% correct.

Of course, one of the key factors in all of this is the Wealthy Wilfs and the team’s salary cap space. Josh Frey explained earlier that the cap has been set at just over $208 million, and we know that the financial future will be tricky. Currently, the team is more than $7 million over next year’s cap. Can they really afford to bring back Peterson?

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Obviously, a lesser cap hit would make things much simpler. A deal that is, say, closer to $6 million would be much more easy to work with. Such a number suggests that team views him as a high-end CB2 rather than the CB1. Switching around his role would be helpful for both the team and Peterson. Of course, being able to do so means getting someone else to take on that CB1 job. Cameron Dantzler, in theory, could be that person. It could also be a rookie (unlikely) or a free agent signing (more likely).

There’s an extra layer here, though. How will Mike Zimmer’s future impact Peterson’s decision making? The veteran corner was clear about his desire to play for Zimmer during the offseason: “Patrick Peterson circled Minnesota as a landing spot during free agency in part because he wanted to work with Head Coach Mike Zimmer, who built his career by coaching defensive backs.”

Purple expectations far and wide suggest Zim is a goner in the offseason. One thing that’s clear, though, is that NFL executives and owners view things differently than fans (go read my interview with former Vikings GM Jeff Diamond). Anyone who needs evidence of this reality can just look at the situation in Chicago. How are Matt Nagy and Ryan Pace still employed? It’s baffling to outsiders. How is Dave Gettleman still in charge in New York? How did Hue Jackson stick around in Cleveland for multiple seasons? All of these situations – and certainly many more – indicate that fans aren’t in charge of who gets to stick around.

If there’s new leadership, will Peterson still want to play for the Vikings? It’s an impossible question to answer; the future hasn’t played out yet. Nevertheless, it’s notable that he wants to stick around. If anything, that’s a compliment to the crusty coach who is currently in charge. Even after all the issues this season, a veteran player who wants to win is looking to re-sign in Minnesota. Well, at least that’s what the rumors suggest.